Ask Difference

Skull vs. Slap — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman — Published on September 28, 2023
A skull is the bony structure that forms the head and houses the brain. A slap is a sharp blow or smack, typically with an open hand. Both words are nouns, but while one refers to anatomy, the other denotes an action or its impact.
Skull vs. Slap — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Skull and Slap

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Key Differences

A skull represents the bony structure of the head in vertebrates, encompassing and protecting the brain. It provides the shape and framework for the face and is crucial for housing vital sensory organs such as the eyes and ears. This skeletal component has been a subject of fascination in various cultures, often symbolizing mortality or power. Conversely, the word slap pertains to an action, specifically a sharp strike or hit, usually with the palm of the hand. It can be both intentional, as in a form of discipline or expression of anger, or accidental.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 28, 2023
When you hear the term "skull," you might immediately think of biology, anatomy, or perhaps archaeology, given its essential role in studying human evolution or forensic examinations. The skull's complex design allows it to protect the brain, support facial structures, and facilitate jaw movements for speech and eating. On the other hand, "slap" might evoke thoughts related to confrontations, emotional reactions, or even certain games children play, like "slap jack." The sound of a slap is distinct, often resonating to indicate the force or surprise of the action.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 28, 2023
Grammatically, both "skull" and "slap" function primarily as nouns. However, they diverge in their secondary applications. "Slap" can also be used as a verb, describing the act of delivering such a blow. For instance, one might "slap" a mosquito on one's arm. "Skull" doesn't possess such versatility in common usage, but it does have related words, such as "skullcap," referring to the upper part of the skull.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 28, 2023
Lastly, the two words can sometimes converge in colloquial phrases. For instance, someone might say, "That ball nearly slapped me in the skull!" Here, "slap" denotes a near impact, while "skull" specifies the part of the body at potential risk.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 28, 2023

Comparison Chart

Primary Meaning

Bony structure of the head
Sharp strike with an open hand
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Sep 28, 2023
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Associated Fields

Anatomy, archaeology
Physical interactions, emotions
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Sep 28, 2023

Grammatical Use

Mainly noun
Both noun and verb
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Sep 28, 2023

Symbolism

Mortality, power
Confrontation, surprise
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Sep 28, 2023

Sensory Implication

Visual, tactile (shape/structure)
Auditory (sound of impact)
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Sep 28, 2023

Compare with Definitions

Skull

The head regarded as the mind or intelligence.
I've had this song stuck in my skull all day.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 25, 2023

Slap

A sharp blow or smack with an open hand.
She gave the misbehaving child a slap on the wrist.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 25, 2023

Skull

Cranial bone forming the protective case around the brain.
Wearing a helmet can protect your skull during a fall.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 25, 2023

Slap

A sudden or unexpected action or occurrence.
His resignation came as a slap in the face.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 25, 2023

Skull

The bony framework of the head, enclosing the brain.
The archaeologist found a 10,000-year-old human skull at the dig site.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 25, 2023

Slap

To strike sharply with an open hand.
He slapped the mosquito that landed on his arm.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 25, 2023

Skull

A representation of the head as a symbol of death.
Pirates used a skull and crossbones as their emblem.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 25, 2023

Slap

A sound made by a sharp impact.
I heard the slap of waves against the boat.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 25, 2023

Skull

The main bone structure of the head without the jaw.
The museum displayed a skull missing its lower jawbone.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 25, 2023

Slap

To apply or place something hastily.
She slapped some peanut butter on a slice of bread.
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Sep 25, 2023

Skull

The skull is a bone structure that forms the head in vertebrates. It supports the structures of the face and provides a protective cavity for the brain.
Tayyaba Rehman
Aug 30, 2022

Slap

A sharp blow made with the open hand or with a flat object; a smack.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

A bone framework enclosing the brain of a vertebrate; the skeleton of a person's or animal's head
He broke his collar bone and fractured his skull
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

The sound of such a blow.
Tayyaba Rehman
Aug 30, 2022

Skull

Hit (someone) on the head
My waking came in drugged stages—I had been skulled
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

A sharp insult
A slap to one's pride.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

The bony or cartilaginous framework that encloses and protects the brain and sense organs of all vertebrates and of one group of nonvertebrates (the hagfishes); cranium.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

To strike with the palm of the hand or a flat object
Slapped him in the face.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

(Informal)The head, regarded as the seat of thought or intelligence
Use your skull and solve the problem.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

To cause to strike forcefully and loudly
"He took a clipping from his wallet and slapped it on the bar" (Nathanael West).
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

A death's-head.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

To put or place quickly or carelessly
Slapped butter on a bagel.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

(anatomy) The main bones of the head considered as a unit; including the cranium, facial bones, and mandible.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

To subject to a legal obligation, such as a fine or court order
Slapped him with a speeding ticket.
Slapped her with a lawsuit.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

These bones as a symbol for death; death's-head.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

To impose (a legal obligation) on someone
The judge slapped an additional fine on the unruly defendant.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

(figuratively) The mind or brain.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

To strike or beat with the force and sound of a slap
Waves slapping against the raft.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

A crust formed on the ladle, etc. by the partial cooling of molten metal.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

Directly and with force
Drove slap into the guardrail.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

The crown of the headpiece in armour.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

(countable) A blow, especially one given with the open hand, or with something broad and flat.
He gave me a friendly slap on the back as a sign of camaraderie.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

(Scotland) A shallow bow-handled basket.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

(countable) A sharp percussive sound like that produced by such a blow.
The slap of my feet on the bathroom tiles
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

Obsolete form of school
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

The percussive sound produced in slap bass playing.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

To hit in the head with a fist, a weapon, or a thrown object.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

Makeup; cosmetics.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

To strike the top of (the ball).
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

An eye-catching sticker used in street art.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

A school, company, or shoal.
A knavish skull of boys and girls did pelt at him.
These fishes enter in great flotes and skulls.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

(transitive) To give a slap to.
She slapped him in response to the insult.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

The skeleton of the head of a vertebrate animal, including the brain case, or cranium, and the bones and cartilages of the face and mouth. See Illusts. of Carnivora, of Facial angles under Facial, and of Skeleton, in Appendix.
Tayyaba Rehman
Aug 30, 2022

Slap

(transitive) To cause something to strike soundly.
He slapped the reins against the horse's back.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

The head or brain; the seat of intelligence; mind.
Skulls that can not teach, and will not learn.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

(intransitive) To strike soundly against something.
The rain slapped against the window-panes.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

A covering for the head; a skullcap.
Let me put on my skull first.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

To be excellent.
The band's new single slaps.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

A sort of oar. See Scull.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

(transitive) To place, to put carelessly.
We'd better slap some fresh paint on that wall.
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Aug 30, 2022

Skull

The bony skeleton of the head of vertebrates
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

To impose a penalty, etc. on (someone).
I was slapped with a parking fine.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

To play slap bass on (an instrument).
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

Exactly, precisely
He tossed the file down slap in the middle of the table.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

A blow, esp. one given with the open hand, or with something broad.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

To strike with the open hand, or with something broad.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

With a sudden and violent blow; hence, quickly; instantly; directly.
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

A blow from a flat object (as an open hand)
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

The act of smacking something; a blow delivered with an open hand
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

Hit with something flat, like a paddle or the open hand;
The impatient teacher slapped the student
A gunshot slapped him on the forehead
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Aug 30, 2022

Slap

Directly;
He ran bang into the pole
Ran slap into her
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Aug 30, 2022

Common Curiosities

Can "skull" refer to any animal's head structure?

Yes, vertebrate animals have skulls that protect their brains.
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 28, 2023

Is a "slap" always done with an open hand?

Typically, yes. A closed-hand strike is usually called a "punch."
Tayyaba Rehman
Sep 28, 2023

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to askdifference.com. As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.

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